22nd May was a black Wednesday for online businesses. Many of them completely disappeared from search engine where others lost almost half of their search engine traffic. Google’s sky was dark and it was heavily raining, when Penguin 2.0 (a.k.a Penguin 4) came out for the kill.
Penguin 2.0 has hit almost 2.3% of the English search and around 80.7°F has been recorded as Google’s temperature by MozCast after this rollout, indicating radical changes in SERP results. The major purpose of this roll out was to eliminate the low quality content and websites that contain a bad linking neighborhood and to give preference to the websites and contacts that REAL people are more likely to share within their circles.
AM I a Penguin 2.0 victim?
If your website’s search traffic dropped miserably after/on May 22nd and you are no longer ranking for your money making key phrases, then probably you have become food for Google’s penguin2.0 and that is mainly because your link profile was not able to impress Google enough to acquire a good spot in its SERPS.
Dish.com and Home24.de are the prominent victims of penguin 2.0, you may check their link to have a good idea of what should be avoided while building links for your website. To be more precise usually Spammy Links, Paid Links, Networked blogs, low quality links, links from websites that contain bad neighborhood are website that you should avoid while creating your link profile as these can remove you from the good books of Google penguin and can make you suffer.
Jesus, what’s next?
If you are outsourcing your link building efforts or you have a team in-house, immediately order them to stop all such efforts. This may lead to taking some hard steps on your side which may include firing the current personnel and hiring a new SEO company that can work for you or encourage your people to take some modern link building training, seminars or may be attend some 2013 SEO and digital marketing conferences.
The Recovery Plan!
The damage has been made but it’s never too late to start driving on the right lane and get back your rankings, traffic and conversions for your business. The journey may be difficult but you will defiantly be going to get greater returns in the longer run!
Here is the ideal recovery plan that can help you get the desired results.
- Manually Remove Low quality and bad links from your profile
The idea is to get in to your profile, uncover the bad links, find the webmasters of those websites and send a request for link removal.
You can get the link profile from Majestic SEO and then get in to the link profile to separate the low quality/bad links from the list. If this sounds like a lot of manual work then you may take assistance of a software program that can help you with the process! Some of the good softwares I know are Link Risk and Remove Me.
Now, that you have the list of links that are unhealthy for your business website, the next step is to find their webmaster’s emails or other contact details that you can find from their websites, or Whois Data. Send emails to request a link removal.
I usually use different templates for Link Removal request but somehow this works really well!
|Hello Webmaster Name,
I am a webmaster from website URL and these days I am working on our link profile to have an idea of where we are getting a link from mainly because of the Google new policies and their penalties to websites that contain bad link profile.
We set some internal criteria for a link and unfortunately your website didn’t fall under that. This doesn’t mean that you are not following Google’s guidelines but we want to be on the safe side.
So, I would love if you can remove our link that is available on following URL Link. Our link is URL.
I would be happy if you could do that!
Looking forward to hear from you!
Record all the responses in a Google Docs spread sheet to observe how many links has been removed and how many people responded to your emails and other details.
Once done, you can move towards link disavow tool through which you will tell Google what links you think are harming your website and you want Google to discount juice coming from those websites. If you want to know the details of how to use a disavow tool then this post by Danny Sullivan will help!
- Stop Building Links
Not literally, but you really need to change the way you were building links and focus on epic content marketing that allow you to attract links naturally.
Here are the changes you should adopt and consider as important when building links in the post-penguin 2.0 world!
Links within the content
Usually content gets most of the attention by the people; also, Google finds relevancy of any page after analysing the content. The idea is to get links from within the content so that real people can relate to it.
You can do this by creating impressive content so that people can relate to it naturally, also this can be attained by guest blogging on different quality websites.
In the start of 2013,Gaz Copland compiled a Post about the Future of SEO in 2013 and I forecasted Author tag to be very important and it seems true especially after the launch of penguin 2.0.
Try to include author tag on your website and where ever you are writing as a columnist or as a guest writer. The idea is to add your author tag and to build the author’s credibility.
Varied Anchor text
One of the major lessons from Penguin 1.0 was not to use exact match anchor text and use variety of anchor text that may or may not be your keyword.
The idea is to build links mainly with your brand name as it looks natural and then from variety of different key phrases that revolve around the keyword.
It’s been a long time since Google started using phrase based indexing so co-occurrence can really help you get better visibility from your desired In order to stay safe from the next Google update the idea is to do monthly audits and check the health of your website and see if there are any low quality and bad links that are pointing to your website and in case there are any, try practicing the link removal idea again.
There are obviously more ways to get links and increase online visibility but above mentioned are some of the necessary ones.
- Monthly Link Audits
Google Updates are not really going to stop and it will continue to tighten the space for low quality / spam content which automatically will give further boost to quality and relevant content against a query.
Try to build as quality content as possible and attract links instead of grabbing or buying one!